Local game developers were hard at work over the long weekend, taking part in the 2023 Global Game Jam Malaysia.
Held at Xsolla offices in Bangsar South, developers spent 48 hours working on games centered around the prompt ‘root’ in the Malaysian arm of the game development event.
The contestants, ranging from student developers to those with industry experience, made games ranging from narrative adventures to platformers
The Game Jam wasn’t limited to video games either, as some entrants also made pen and paper RPGs.
“It’s like a camp for nerds”, teases Jonathan Tang, organizer of the Malaysia Global Game Jam.
Jonathan and fellow organizer Ivan even took part in the game jam themselves, with Ivan even helping provide assets to other teams.
“In Malaysia game devs are more close knitted and support each other”, Jonathan, explaining the success of the Game Jam.
The developers themselves were made to present their games at the closing of the event, running demos of the titles and explaining the core ideas behind whatever they produced.
Some even expressed their desire to continue their products post Game Jam, being satisfied with the core ideas but wanting a better final product.
Teams ranged from solo developers to 10-man teams, sporting both home made and pre made assets to get their titles off the ground.
Global Game Jam 2023 is organized by grassroots games community Games HQ Malaysia, in partnership with Xsolla and MDEC.
The Importance of Game Jams (Editorial)
Game Jams are an important part of having a healthy local indie scene, largely in part of their restrictions- by having you have to show something over the course of the weekend, you encourage the act of making games.
They’re also a great way to actually mix experience pools, since younger developers have a chance to work alongside more senior ones, or even just developers who might have discovered wisdom the other might not have, yet.
Personally what strikes me the most was the simplicity of a lot of the games- it harkens back to early Atari days, where game development was about a lot of actual play- that is, what task can we make fun?
With Malaysia continuing to make its presence known in the global game industry, events like these are exactly what we need to make sure we have a well-cared-for crop of talents.
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